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Learn How Samsung's 108MP Sensor Works In The Galaxy S20 Ultra

The latest Samsung Galaxy S20 flagship smartphone collection features a smartphone with a 108MP sensor and Samsung has released more details on the ISOCELL Bright HM1.

|  Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra in Camera Phones
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Samsung’s 108Mp ISOCELL Bright HM1 sesnor


Samsung has released more details on its new 108MP ISOCELL Bright HM1 sensor technology, found in the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra, which allows the smartphone camera to capture brighter and more detailed 108Mp photographs as well as 8K videos at 24 frames per second (fps).

Thanks to nona-binning technology which combines nine pixels into one at the sensor level, the Galaxy S20 Ultra can shift dynamically between a high-resolution 108MP mode and a 12MP mode and thanks to the larger sensor it should also perform better in low light. 

The pixel-binning technology isn't new, but it's been improved to feature a three-by-three pixel structure rather than two-by-two. 

Samsung ISOCELL technology

For those who enjoy a bit of history, the Samsung ISOCELL technology was first introduced in 2013 and then based on this technology, Samsung introduced the first 1.0um pixel image sensor in 2015, then a 0.9-pixel sensor in 2017. In June 2018, Samsung introduced an upgraded pixel isolation technology, the ISOCELL Plus.

Pixel-binning basically merges neighbouring pixels to work as a single large pixel and with the older Tetracell released in 2017, four neighbouring pixels were merged to work as a single large pixel, whereas the newer Nonacell merges nine neighbouring 0.8μm pixels to mimic a large 2.4μm pixel, more than doubling the Tetracell’s light absorption rate for improved low light performance. 

This does come with its own problems, however, as when the number of adjoining cells increases, so does colour interference but Samsung says its ISOCELL Plus technology minimises optical loss/light reflection to fight this.

As the sensor also directly converts pixels using an embedded hardware IP rather than the mobile processor, it allows for 3x lossless zoom meaning users can get closer to subjects without losing detail. With in-built 12MP photo mode which, thanks to the 108-million pixels, the camera can produce 12MP resolution images with 3x zoom without having to use upscaling. 

Other clever features include the HM1' s Smart-ISO technology which intelligently selects the optimal ISO and the built-in real-time HDR technology which optimises exposures. The HM1 also supports a gyro-based electronic image stabilisation (EIS) and Super-PD (phase-detection) technology for faster autofocus.

For more information, visit the Samsung website

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